No re­grets

Cebu Daily News - - FAITH -

One night, the con­ver­sa­tion with my friends veered to­wards re­tire­ment, old age and death. I told them that when I have to re­tire from work, I wouldn’t want to live with any of my chil­dren’s fam­i­lies. One of them can have my house be­cause I’d rather be in a good fa­cil­ity for el­ders. I know I’d be in good com­pany and I’d keep my body, mind and heart stim­u­lated.

I said I’m not jok­ing. One day, we’d all die so I’d rather pre­pare for that even­tu­al­ity by shar­ing my life with others of my age and mag­nify the great­ness of God in my life.

Life is fleet­ing. Time passes by quickly and be­fore you know it, your chil­dren have be­come adults, your near­ing re­tire­ment, you get tired eas­ily now and then what?

It seemed just like yes­ter­day that my three chil­dren were in­no­cently run­ning around. Now they’re slow­ing build­ing their own fam­i­lies. But I’m happy. I can look back to those years and say I’ve no re­grets. I’ve been in their hap­pi­est as well as awk­ward mo­ments. I would like to be­lieve I’d given them emo­tional sta­bil­ity and un­wa­ver­ing val­ues that have made them who they are now. When my time is up, I’d have no re­grets hav­ing them as chil­dren and go­ing through the rough and tum­ble times of a widow rais­ing them on her own.

No re­grets. It’s a good feel­ing when we know we’ve lived a ful­fill­ing and pur­pose­ful life. If not, what would be some re­grets we’d have be­fore tak­ing that last trip to eter­nal life?

I caught this synopsis from Bron­nie Ware’s in­ter­na­tional best­seller “The Top Five Re­grets of the Dy­ing.”

Mor­bid? I don’t think so. I found the list as good to re­flect on:

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to my­self, not the life others ex­pected of me.

Ware wrote that this is the “most com­mon re­gret of all.” Most peo­ple have made de­ci­sions on how to live their life based on ex­pec­ta­tions from par­ents or so­cial pres­sure. My own wish is that we should be able to be true to what we be­lieve can make us happy in life. As long as it is not evil or crosses God’s com­mand­ments, go for what your heart’s de­sire is cry­ing out.”

Bible verse to live by : Ro­mans 12:2 - “Do not be con­formed to this world, but be trans­formed by the re­newal of your mind, that by test­ing you may dis­cern what is the will of God, what is good and ac­cept­able and per­fect.” 2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard. When you can’t even turn your head to­wards your child ask­ing you a ques­tion be­cause you’re still glued on your com­puter, work­ing or talk­ing on the phone dis­cussing work, tsk, tsk, tsk, you’d not see how your child has de­vel­oped through their young years.

Even Je­sus, de­spite His busy min­istry, made sure He took time to rest. Mark 6:31- “Then, be­cause so many peo­ple were com­ing and go­ing that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by your­selves to a quiet place and get some rest.”

3. I wish I’d had the courage to ex­press my feel­ings.

Pent up emo­tions can lead to sick­ness. Emo­tions are gifts of God to us. So, shar­ing our feel­ings with others is help­ful in man­ag­ing our emo­tions. We are not cre­ated to live along. God gave Eve to Adam so he’d not be lonely. God gave us other peo­ple who can share our bur­dens and whose bur­dens we share.

Bible verse to live by: 2 Corinthi­ans 3-4 - “God of all com­fort, who com­forts us in all our af­flic­tion, so that we may be able to com­fort those who are in any af­flic­tion, with the com­fort with which we our­selves are com­forted by God.”

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends. You’d know that you’ve reached your prime when sud­denly you see your­self at­tend­ing class or of­fice re­unions or start trac­ing where your close friends way back your younger years. You may have for­got­ten them or if not, just didn't have the time to say “yes” when they were try­ing to catch up with you. Alas, friend­ships have slipped by over the years.

Bible verse to live by: Proverbs 3:3-4 - “Never let go of loy­alty and faith­ful­ness. Tie them around your neck; write them on your heart. If you do this, both God and peo­ple will be pleased with you.” 5. I wish that I had let my­self be hap­pier. Hap­pi­ness is a choice. To make sure that we are happy is not be­ing self­ish. For me, if we are at peace and con­tented with our­selves, we are able to make others happy, too. I al­ways be­lieve that we can not give what we don’t have. If we want the world to be good and happy, start with our own selves.

Bible verse to live by: Ec­cle­si­astes 3 :12-13- “I know that there is noth­ing bet­ter for peo­ple than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find sat­is­fac­tion in all their toil—this is the gift of God.”

No re­grets. It’s a good feel­ing when we know we’ve lived a ful­fill­ing and pur­pose­ful life, putting on high pri­or­ity the real es­sen­tials over the worldly stuff. And these are fam­ily, love and faith in God.

It’s my turn loreen­sarmiento@ya­hoo.com

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